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Old 03-16-2004, 09:20 AM   #17
Bronson's Avatar
Dojo: Seiwa Dojo and Southside Dojo
Location: Battle Creek & Kalamazoo, MI
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,677
In our dojo everyone, from first test to last, is required to write out a pre-test interview. We have a list of questions that have to be answered in an essay. The questions never change but as understanding and ability increase the answers will. Dan grades must also write a paper on a book, usually your choice but sensei may choose if there's one in particular he feels may help you.

Questions like:
  • What is the most significant thing you've learned since your last test?
  • What do you feel are your strongest and weakest aikido arts or skills?
  • Why should you be considered for promotion?
  • Have you used aikido outside the dojo? Give examples.

We also have questions as part of our actual test:
  • What is aikido?
  • What is shodo o seisu?
  • What are the principles of aikido?
  • What are the principles to Unify Mind and Body?
  • What is Masakatsu agatsu?
  • Explain Range of Effectiveness.
  • Explain Circular Motion and how we use it.
  • Explain The Spirit of Loving Protection for all Things.

Just some examples of our "mental" part. I find the pre-test interview to be very helpful in getting me to solidify a lot of the random thoughts about my training that I've got bouncing around in my head.


"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
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